Eye examination and the making of eyeglasses require a variety of specialized tools and instruments. From heavy cast iron to fragile paper, these functional items were used by skilled professionals to care for their patients’ vision and vision aids. Sometimes patients utilized self-testing devices when professional help was unavailable.
Arneson Korector, T.J. Arneson, O.D., ca 1930
This rotating target, prisms, and training exercises were used by many optometrists for correction of strabismus and all forms of muscular imbalances in children and adults.
This instrument was designed to determine the index of refraction. Cataract Optical Co., Buffalo NY, ca 1900
Ericiscope or Bichrome Check
Developed in the early 1930s, this instrument used filters and colored glass to provide an acuity test much more exact than the black & white sight test charts.
Eye testing, silver and wood optometers
Leland Refractor, George H. Leland, Dayton Ohio
Lens bar, Hardy & Company
Ryer Dynamic Retinoscope, E. LeRoy Ryer, ca 1900
With the invention and sales of this instrument, Dr. Ryer was able to hold on to a professional optometric practice
Schematic eye and retina targets
Home eye tester with instructions
Self tester, True-Fit Optical Co., Chicago
Marketed as a “scientific self-tester” to determine lens power needed for mail order glasses
Shuron Master Marker 400A, Shuron Optical, Geneva NY
Lens centering device used to position and accurately stamp reference lines for use in lens blocking; The master Marker mechanically and uniformly placed an axis or cutting line on a curved lens surface, eliminating the need for dots and lines drawn by hand.
Stereo Orthoptor, American Optical Co.
The use of light therapy for vision problems was pioneered in the 1920s and ‘30s. The syntonizer delivered precise, selected light frequencies of the visible spectrum and was used to treat myopia, strabismus, amblyopia, visual fatigue, and general binocular dysfunctions.
Ferree-Rand Projector, Bausch & Lomb
Holmgrens Test for Color Blindness
Prof. Holmgrens colored yarn test, American Optical, Southbridge, MA
Clason Visual Acuity Meter, Bausch & Lomb